Fillings

Amalgam fillings

Amalgam fillings are a well-established and inexpensive way to repair tooth damage. They offer a highly effective way to restore the structure and functionality of a tooth, particularly the back teeth. This type of filling has been used for over 180 years, so it has been tried and tested on millions of mouths.

This type of filling is available on the NHS.

Benefits

  • Extremely hard wearing
  • Quicker to place than composite fillings
  • Less expensive than alternative restorative methods

Treatment steps

  • The area to be treated is numbed with a local anaesthetic and the decayed part of the tooth removed with special dental tools.
  • A base or liner may be placed in the tooth to prevent sensitivity following the procedure.
  • The amalgam is mixed and then placed in the tooth. It is tightly compacted to ensure every part of the cavity is filled.
  • The amalgam is then shaped to resemble the tooth and, if necessary, it is smoothed down so it feels comfortable.

Aftercare
If looked after properly, amalgam fillings can last for years and are particularly suitable for teeth that are subjected to lots of wear and tear, such as those at the back of the mouth. More discreet composite (white) fillings can be used to treat decayed teeth but these are more expensive and less durable.

Composite Fillings

As well as providing an effective repair for tooth decay or damage, composite (or white) fillings are also a natural-looking alternative to more obvious amalgam fillings. This is because they are made from tooth-coloured resin, a mixture of plastic and glass that blends in beautifully with your teeth.

They support the structure of a damaged tooth, helping to prevent further breakage or sensitivity, and can be placed in the front or back teeth.

As composite fillings are regarded as a cosmetic treatment, they are only available as a private service.

Benefits

  • They blend in beautifully with your natural teeth
  • Modern materials make them a durable choice
  • Less of the tooth needs to be removed before placement of the filling
  • They can restore decayed, chipped, worn or broken teeth

Treatment steps

  • The area to be treated is numbed with a local anaesthetic and the decayed part of the tooth removed.
  • A gel is applied to the tooth, creating tiny holes to allow the composite material to bond effectively.
  • The acidic gel is washed away and the tooth dried.
  • A priming agent is applied so the composite filling will form a strong bond.
  • The colour matched shade of composite is then applied in layers and moulded to match the shape of the tooth.
  • The resin is hardened with a special bright light and it is then polished to look like a natural part of the tooth.

Aftercare
To prevent decay forming around the composite filling, it is important to brush at least twice a day and see your dentist for regular check-ups.

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  • “Dear Mrs Patel, just to say thank you again for being so amazing in every way. I am truly grateful for the wonderful treatment you have given me over the years, it has been exceptional.”

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  • “To all at Bush Dentist, many thanks for the good job you have done. Thank you all. Don’t ever change!”

  • “Dear Mrs Patel, just to say thank you again for being so amazing in every way. I am truly grateful for the wonderful treatment you have given me over the years, it has been exceptional.”

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